Thursday, August 09, 2007

Christian Praise Music Sucks

There, I said it. I've said it before. And now The Anchoress is saying it:

Worst Jesus Praise Song Ever. Really. That’s execrable. H/T Junkyard Blog. 95% of all “praise music” and 98% of all Catholic “hymns” written since 1972 are just shudder-inducing. Most of what is played at mass these days serves as useful penance and not much else.
Ha, ha! The Anchoress makes me laugh. I'm so glad I'm not alone in my distress. Here's the thing: anyone who is musically inclined recognizes that the songs are all in the same key, they have no interesting rhythm, the melodies are bland, the repetition puts one into a zombified trance.

There are a few good songs. I've been forced to listen to this stuff because 1) my kids love it (more proof they're more spiritual than I am--not that that's a huge accomplishment) and 2) I was drafted to lead the kid's choir at church and they like this music.

Here are some Christian praise I like, with commentary.

First, "Held" by Natalie Grant (no relation to Amy). This song has great meaning for me because of my own son who died.

Second, going a totally different direction, is TobyMac singing "Made to Love". The message is fantastic. Redemption again. I love the line, "Daddy, I'm on my way." Check the lyrics here.

Third, "Remember Me" with Ginny Owens. This is a ridiculous video, but you can at least hear the music.

There's a start. They're not all bad, but few are truly great. See, here's how I see it. Either a song glorifies God or it doesn't. And some don't glorify God even though the lyrics are well-meaning, because the musicality of the piece is an insult to music and ears which are a creation of God. Good intentions pave the road to musack hell.

And don't get me started about Amy Grant's "Pave Over A Parking Lot". Just when I think Democracy is the best thing going, I remember that song and her singing it and I thinks to myself what a horrible world!


Anonymous said...

My husband is a musician and he would most definitely agree with on today's Christian music. He has played in the bands for years but finds it often very boring because the music is just not up to par like his secular band he plays in.

The words "Made to Love" are beautiful.

jess said...

"And some don't glorify God even though the lyrics are well-meaning, because the musicality of the piece is an insult to music and ears which are a creation of God."

LOL! I believe there is new music coming... good stuff, genuine worship with inspired music... my hubby is doing some, and I have heard some others. But yeah. the majority of what is out there is schlock.

kman said...

There is definitely good Christian Music out there. It's not played in most churches... but it's out there.

Fellowship Of The Woodlands has fantastic music... I could be partial since my cousin plays in the band but you won't hear anything labeled as a "hymn" thats for sure. They also have one service that is more "traditional" for those who want it.

Every so often at FOTW they will slightly change the lyrics to contemporary songs and change the meaning into a Christian song. Kind of like Sister Act but normally with current pop or alternative music.